CCC baseball: Hornets finish league sweep of Cavaliers

Published 4:23 am Thursday, April 27, 2023



Staff report

SALISBURY — Salisbury’s baseball season looked like a train wreck in late March.

The Hornets were 0-9, had dropped two one-run games to a Thomasville team they usually beat and had been crushed by ugly scores such as 20-0 and 23-3 in non-conference games.

Now the Hornets, coached by Carson Herndon, are finishing strong. They are 8-5 in their last 13 games. Highlights have included a sweep of  Central Carolina Conference sweep of South Davidson and a sweep of rival North Rowan on Tuesday and Wednesday of this week.

That 14-2 and 7-1 sweep of South Davidson is going to give the Hornets (8-14, 6-6), who tied with South Davidson in the standings, the No. 3 seed for next week’s CCC Tournament. That’s expected to mean another meeting with No. 6 seed North Rowan (4-11, 3-9) in the first round.

In Wednesday’s 10-0 victory over the Cavaliers, Salisbury pitcher Evan Koontz was most of the story. Koontz pitched into the sixth, struck out 10, walked two and allowed only two hits.

The Hornets only had four hits, but they had a constant parade of baserunners with 11 walks, three HBPs and four North errors.

Hank Webb, Jackson Sparger, Landon Tucker and Cam Corpening had the hits. Webb had two RBIs. Corpening scored three runs, while Aiden Mowery scored two.

Salisbury scored three times in the bottom of the first against North starter Carter Boydston and never looked back.

The Hornets ended the game via the 10-run rule by scoring a run in the bottom of the sixth.

Salisbury is still only 45th in the 2A West RPI rankings, so the Hornets would have to win the CCC tournament to make the state playoffs.

North is closer to the playoff picture, but is unlikely to make a 32-team bracket. The Cavaliers are currently 38th on the 1A West RPI list.

Brayden Mahaley and Alex Prandini had hits for North, which beat the Hornets in a non-conference game early in the season.